A 25-year-old black woman was shot dead by two Atlanta cops after she opened fire on them from inside their police cruiser. The woman was named as a Alexia Christian. The incident happened on the evening of April 30 just across the street from the cop’s precinct on Pryor Street, close to the Fulton County Courthouse.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. She Fired Twice at the 2 Cops
The two cops were investigating reports of a stolen car in downtown Atlanta. The officers found Christian in the missing vehicle in a parking lot, reports WXIA. The station says she was arrested and put in a police cruiser. It was then that she pulled a handgun and fired twice at the cops. The two officers returned fire. She was rushed to a local hospital where she later died.
2. Male Cops Are Known to Not Do Full Pat Downs on Female Suspects
Police Spokesman Sgt. Gregory Lyon didn’t say how many shot were fired in total, reports the Atlanta Journal Constitution. He did say that it was a common occurrence for male cops to not do comprehensive pat downs on female suspects.
3. One of the Cops Involved Is a Rookie
Neither of the cops were hit during the gunfire. Both officers, and Christian, are black. Police aren’t saying if Christian was handcuffed when she opened fire, though WSB-TV reports she was but managed to get one hand free. One witness told WXIA that she thought Christian was a man saying “The gentleman was shooting at the officer, and the officer started firing back.” With another eyeball witness saying she heard more than four shots being fired in total. The two cops have been placed on administrative leave pending a full investigation. One of the officers is a rookie.
4. Police Says Christian Had Drugs on Her When She Was Arrested
WSB-TV reports that when Christian was arrested, the officers found drugs on her person and added that there was a warrant out for her arrest. The incident comes as a police across American are coming under scrutiny for the use of deadly force. The city of Baltimore has been held to a curfew after nights of rioting following the death of Freddie Gray in police custody.
5. The Shooting Happened Close to the 10th Anniversary of the Brian Nichols Shooting in Atlanta
The incident happened in the same area where Brian Nichols shot multiple people as he escaped Fulton County courthouse in Atlanta in March 2005. During his trial for rape, Nichols stole a gun and shot the judge, a reporter, a sheriff’s deputy, and prior to his re-arrest, a federal agent. Nichols was caught 26 hours after the March 11, 2005 incident. In November 2008, he was sentenced to life in prison.